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Endless Things (Aegypt Cycle) Paperback – February 24, 2009

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Editorial Reviews


"A work of great erudition and deep humanity that is as beautifully composed as any novel in my experience."- The Washington Post Book World

"With Endless Things and the completion of the «gypt cycle, Crowley has constructed one of the finest, most welcoming tales contemporary fiction has to offer us." -Bookforum

"An impressive and moving, conclusion." -Booklist


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Product Details

  • Series: Aegypt Cycle (Book 4)
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Overlook Books; Reprint edition (February 24, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590200454
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590200452
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.4 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.1 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,315,248 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

John Crowley was born in the appropriately liminal town of Presque Isle, Maine, in 1942, his father then an officer in the US Army Air Corps. He grew up in Vermont, northeastern Kentucky and (for the longest stretch) Indiana, where he went to high school and college. He moved to New York City after college to make movies, and did find work in documentary films, an occupation he still pursues. He published his first novel (The Deep) in 1975, and his 14th volume of fiction (Lord Byron's Novel: The Evening Land) in 2005. Since 1993 he has taught creative writing at Yale University. In 1992 he received the Award in Literature from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. He finds it more gratifying that almost all his work is still in print.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Dick Johnson VINE VOICE on May 25, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
After finishing Daemonomania (volume 3 of the Aegypt Cycle), I thought I had some idea of how this tetrology would end. What foolish, foolish thinking! This is Crowley, where the shortest distance between Point A and Point B is not a straight line. In fact, it may be impossible to get from A to B. But - if you could somehow get to B, it may be possible to get to A.

There are those things in life which we are sure are true - sometimes they really are. There are those we hope are true - sometimes they really aren't. There are those that aren't true but should be - sometimes we only dream.

Through the four volumes we've followed a nebulous storyline, and hoped for understanding. Sometimes understanding is just out of reach. But even if this written story is over, the journey it laid out for us doesn't have to end. This one will stay with me.

Oh, Sam, what happened to that shiny .... (Is the Cycle really done?)
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Umm Lila VINE VOICE on April 9, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In the last month or so, I've read all of the books in the Aegypt cycle. It's been a bit of a chore. The book spirals through time, characters and storylines, changing the past, present and future. Or perhaps it is a major river (starting Y-shaped) with many streams, brooks, creeks, rivulets trickling forth.

Crowley knows the strangeness of his plot structure well, and addresses it in a passage about halfway through Endless Things where Pierce (I shall resist a near-obligatory pun on the implications of his name) is reviewing and editing the last, unpublished book by his favorite author, Fellowes Kraft:

"The book itself, Kraft's original, had turned out to be even less complete in some ways than Pierce remembered it being. As the pages had silted up Kraft had seemingly begun making the worst of fictional errors, or ceased correcting them: all those things that alienate readers and annoy critics, like the introduction of new major characters at late stages of the story, unpacked and sent out on new adventures while the old main characters sit lifeless somewhere offstage, or stumble to keep up. New plot movements, departing from the main branch of the story for so long that they *become* the main branch without our, the readers', agreement or assent. All of it inducing that sense of reckless haste or -- worse -- droning inconsequence that sooner or later causes us -- us, the only reason for any of it, the sole feelers of its feelings, sole knowers of its secrets -- to sigh, or groan in impatience, or maybe even end (with a clap) the story the writer seems only to want to keep on beginning."

Post script: I would also like to know what happened to John Dee's crystal ball and what is the deal with the weird animal car names.
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The first volume in the Aegypt series was a captivating, if puzzling, reading with endearing characters and suspenseful non-linear developments. Crowley bounces well between concrete human reality and convincing philosophical musings. Central to the entire opus is the wonderful possibility of a malleable time, past and future. The second volume proved a disappointing chore to read because of a lengthy digression into the childhood of the protagonist. That caused me not to pursue the third volume. Warm recollections of the first volume, now entitled The Solitudes, enticed me to read the last volume in hopes that it would produce a fuller, conclusive realization. Sections of Endless Things are inspired and successfully engaging, but the progression of scenes reflecting the protagonist Pierce's vacilating motivation unravel into an uninteresting and shallow semblance of resolution. One gets the strong impression that Crowley had run out of steam, was tired of his concept, and resorted to throwing bits and pieces together. We get a flattening-out of the original wonder. Too bad.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. Runde on December 5, 2010
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The Solitudes (The Aegypt Cycle)Love & Sleep (Aegypt)DAEMONOMANIA (Aegypt Cycle; Vol. 3)John Crowley's Aegypt Cycle is a major achievement in literature. It not only stands up to several re-readings but resolves its themes appropriately and completely. Part fabulist, part historical, and part philosophical, the whole cycle stands as one of the great literary achievements of our time, perhaps the greatest. Yet it's no dry English major's novel; the characters, their stories, and their fates keep us turning the pages long after the bedside reading light should have been turned off. It works so well on so many levels. Writing this comment makes me want to pick it up again.
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